Bible Reference: Exodus 14:24-25; 31
Translation: New Living Translation (NLT)
Bible Text: 24 But just before dawn the Lord looked down on the Egyptian army from the pillar of fire and cloud, and he threw their forces into total confusion. 25 He twisted their chariot wheels, making their chariots difficult to drive. “Let’s get out of here—away from these Israelites!” the Egyptians shouted. “The Lord is fighting for them against Egypt!”……….31 When the people of Israel saw the mighty power that the Lord had unleashed against the Egyptians, they were filled with awe before him. They put their faith in the Lord and in his servant Moses.
OBSERVATION: I’m sure that many Egyptians had heard about God, and through the plagues had even seen the power of God, but in verse 25 they recognized that the power of God was fighting against them. After the Red Sea incident, the Israelites were able to look back in awe and see the power of God in action to save them. Not only were their eyes opened, but they gained a new, stronger faith in God and in His servant chosen to lead them. I am fascinated with the ways that God chooses to get the attention of His children!
APPLICATION: Don’t you find it interesting how we pray for God to touch our neighbor, or our coworker, or our fellow worshipper (often because we see so much going on in their lives), yet when we see God move, He touches their life and ours? You might beg God to give you strength and wisdom to call and encourage a friend who has been given a death sentence by their doctor, yet as you walk out of their door from your visit, you feel so much better in your own heart because of how God used them to bless you! In each of our lives, we may feel like there is so much opposition around us that it seems virtually impossible to survive as a child of God. However, I want you to think with me today about the scenario in which our focal verses come from. The Israelites were blessed of God, and He basically shook the foundation of the earth to show His might and His protection over His people. There were plagues upon plagues as God demonstrated His power before Pharaoh, but can’t you see that the whole Egyptian population also suffered through and witnessed God’s awesome power through all of that? However, the Egyptians were loyal to their king, and therefore obeyed his orders to take off after the Israelites, even though they left with the full permission of Pharaoh. In the short clips of the chase that ensued, we could see where, in verse 25, the Egyptians recognized God. For they could clearly see that only God could open the waters so that His chosen people could march through on dry land. Only God could place so many obstacles in the way of the Egyptians to slow them down and keep them away from His people, the Israelites. But also look at the Israelites for a moment. In verse 31 they were able to look back at the struggling Egyptians and they realized that they contributed absolutely nothing to their demise, and that there was no other explanation but the hand of God working on their behalf to save them. Friends, our God loves us, His children that He sacrificed His only Son for, in much the same way. In saving the Israelites, He showed them that they were worth the world to Him. In saving us, we can clearly see that although we were placed on this earth to face all of its trials and temptations, yet God in all of His tender mercy and grace, reached down and showed us His forgiveness and His unrelenting love in a way that we were compelled to accept Him as Lord of our life. In doing this, we now can stand in awe like the Israelites, and marvel at the goodness of our God, and offer our daily sacrifices of praise and thanksgiving to Him tirelessly. Oh friend, What A Mighty God We Serve!
PRAYER: Precious Lord, I may never know why You loved the Israelites so much that You saved them from the Egyptian army, nor how or why You would sacrifice Your one and only Son so that I might live eternally in heaven with You. But like the Israelites, I want to reflect on the love You have shown towards me in so many ways and at so many times, and Lord I offer up my sacrifices of endless praise and unending words of affirmation and thanksgiving. Father, I pray that as each reader makes contact with this devotional today, and I ask that You would deliberately place it obviously in the face of those who need this word today, that they may lift up holy hands in praise, thanksgiving and adoration to our one Lord, one Savior and one eternal King! AMEN!